He writes in this font. She writes in this font.
I don’t like sushi… I’ll let that sink in for a second…
Now that you’ve recovered from the initial shock of reading the above blasphemy, I’ll try to explain and answer some of the obvious questions. YES, I have tried it, several times. YES, I like sea food generally. NO, I have never had a “bad experience” with sushi that made me dislike it. Importantly, it’s not that I dislike or think it is disgusting (there is no vehement sentiment against sushi). I simply do not like it.
Well, did not* like it. Megan succeeded in changing that position last Saturday night.
“Baby, let’s not cook tonight, I want sushi.” That’s how it started. Megan and I were on the basketball court, playing “H-O-R-S-E” when she dropped that suggestion, followed by swishing a three and telling me “all net, no backboard.” I missed the shot and my plans to deviate our new dinner plans to something like Thai or Spanish were also off target.
Gracefully, soothingly, Megan lulled me to accepting the inevitable: We were going for sushi. Here were her key points:
“Baby, I really want sushi”
“But you’ve never had Bamboo Sushi”
Staring at me with soft, pleading eyes (I think this one sunk him like my short-lived run of threes. I feel like such a baller when we play, especially with my Kobe's on. )
Clearly, these tactics were successful. I am usually better at cooperating on a place to eat, but sometimes when I can nearly taste the food I am craving, there really are no other options. I was going to Bamboo. I think I even told him that I would just go by myself, if necessary. Some may call that being a “brat,” but I just call it hungry.
With the first bite, Bamboo Sushi became a new favorite. There was a serious moment of anticipation for me as I watched him try a piece. I knew the Green Machine roll would get him! Let’s back up though, before we even stepped into the NW location on 23rd Avenue, and even before we got ready to leave suburbia for the city.
After I acquiesced to Megan’s dinner request, she quickly went to work showing me why Bamboo Sushi was different than other restaurants, of any style. The first page she showed me was the interactive menu where they explain more about select items, including where they get ingredients and providing wikipedia links for more information. Their approach to an online menu made me more comfortable with understanding what I would want to order because I want to know what’s in my food — but do not like to ask the server a million questions. Nobody wants to be that that… person.
For reference: We ordered the Usuzukuri, Green Machine, and Northwest Philly Roll. All were fantastic. Can I just mention here how much I loved Guy’s reaction when the server brought out the Usuzukuri? That was one item we did not research before ordering. He looked at me and admittedly said, “I have no idea what I even ordered. This appears to be caviar.” This memory alone is enough to make me laugh instantly.
Icing on the cake (or avocado on the roll, in this case), I checked out Bamboo Sushi’s Core Values page. It was inspiring. How often do you read a restaurant’s “about us” page and feel inspired? I, for one, have never felt motivated to volunteer or, at a minimum, share a restaurant’s link — like a Ghandi quote — after reading it. Here’s why:
“Look down the path ahead of you and see what is coming. It is always better to be proactive than reactive. Take the lead and look ahead. Figure out how to set a trend or create something first. For our guests, we must always anticipate their needs. As a company, we are looking ahead to stay ahead. We live in the now, but build and plan for the future, so that we are always prepared. Failing to prepare, is preparing to fail. Be focused, listen, learn, act.”
And here is a little tid-bit about their focus on sustainability:
“With 67% of seafood in the United States being consumed in restaurants, we believe it is imperative to create a restaurant where people can get the freshest and best fish possible, while simultaneously helping to save the oceans and marine life.”
Being a “Coastie” (kids from the Oregon Coast, I know you can relate), having a respect of marine life is important to me. Because of this, Bamboo has a special place in my heart. When we saw that big “B” for Benefit Company on the wall near the host station, I was reassured even more. I am happy to be able to find others who can relate and make me feel like I’m at home in Portland.
Now, I like sushi. Whether you do as well, or share my expired sentiment from last week — go try Bamboo Sushi. It’s not often you can justify an incredible meal by knowing that it is for a good cause.